Thank you for joining the St. Monica’s Live Stream Mass for Monday 5/3/2021

Going Deeper – Gospel Reflections

Readings for Monday 5/3/2021

Reading I

I am reminding you, brothers and sisters,
of the Gospel I preached to you,
which you indeed received and in which you also stand.
Through it you are also being saved,
if you hold fast to the word I preached to you,
unless you believed in vain.
For I handed on to you as of first importance what I also received:
that Christ died for our sins
in accordance with the Scriptures;
that he was buried;
that he was raised on the third day
in accordance with the Scriptures;
that he appeared to Cephas, then to the Twelve.
After that, he appeared to more
than five hundred brothers and sisters at once,
most of whom are still living,
though some have fallen asleep.
After that he appeared to James,
then to all the Apostles.
Last of all, as to one born abnormally,
he appeared to me.

Responsorial Psalm

R.    (5)  Their message goes out through all the earth.
or:
R.    Alleluia.
The heavens declare the glory of God;
and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.
Day pours out the word to day;
and night to night imparts knowledge.
R.    Their message goes out through all the earth.
or:
R.    Alleluia.
Not a word nor a discourse
whose voice is not heard;
Through all the earth their voice resounds,
and to the ends of the world, their message.
R.    Their message goes out through all the earth.
or:
R.    Alleluia.

Alleluia

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
I am the way, the truth, and the life, says the Lord;
Philip, whoever has seen me has seen the Father.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel

Jesus said to Thomas, “I am the way and the truth and the life.
No one comes to the Father except through me.
If you know me, then you will also know my Father.
From now on you do know him and have seen him.”
Philip said to him,
“Master, show us the Father, and that will be enough for us.”
Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you for so long a time
and you still do not know me, Philip?
Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.
How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?
Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me?
The words that I speak to you I do not speak on my own.
The Father who dwells in me is doing his works.
Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me,
or else, believe because of the works themselves.
Amen, amen, I say to you,
whoever believes in me will do the works that I do,
and will do greater ones than these,
because I am going to the Father.
And whatever you ask in my name, I will do,
so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
If you ask anything of me in my name, I will do it.”

Do You Not Know Me?

Philip said to Jesus, “Master, show us the Father, and that will be enough for us.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you for so long a time and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?” John 14:8–9

Today’s liturgical feast is in honor of two of the Apostles, Philip and James the Lesser.  Little is known about James other than that he was chosen by our Lord for the apostolic ministry and that we have one of his letters, which is contained in the New Testament.  James eventually went to Jerusalem and led the Church for a few decades until he was stoned to death as a martyr. Philip preached in Greece, Phrygia and Syria.  He and Saint Bartholomew were thought to have been crucified upside down. Philip preached upside down from the cross until his death.

In the Gospel for today’s Mass, we are presented with an encounter that Philip had with Jesus. Though this encounter appears to be a rebuke of Philip by Jesus, it’s a rebuke that is quite heartfelt. Jesus says, “Have I been with you for so long a time and you still do not know me, Philip?” Jesus did, indeed, spend much time with His disciples. They stayed together, ate together, traveled together and spent much time talking with each other. Therefore, Jesus’ comments to Philip emanated from His real and lived personal relationship with Philip.

Take the first part of that statement to begin with. “Have I been with you so long…” Imagine Jesus saying this to you. Is this something He would be able to say to you? Is it true that you do spend much time with Him? Do you spend time reading the Gospels, speaking to Him from the depths of your heart, conversing with Him, praying to Him, and listening to His gentle voice?

But Jesus goes on: “…and you still do not know me…?” This is a humble truth that is important to admit. It is true that even those who have a very deep and transforming life of prayer do not know our Lord deeply enough. There is no limit to the transformation that can take place in our lives when we know Jesus personally.

Jesus’ statement goes on: “Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.” So the next question is this: “Do you know the Father?” Do you know the Father’s love, His care for you, His perfect will? Though the Father and the Son are united as one God, They are still distinct Persons, and we must, therefore, work to establish a relationship of love with each one of them.

As initially mentioned, the comments from Jesus are a gentle rebuke of love to Philip, and He wants to speak this same gentle rebuke to you. But it’s a rebuke of love meant to encourage you to get to know Him better. It’s an invitation to personalize your relationship with Jesus and the Father in a real and concrete way. Do you know Him? Do you know the Son of God? Do you know the Father in Heaven?

Reflect, today, upon these loving questions of our Lord as if they were spoken to you. Let His words encourage you to get to know Him more deeply. Pray for your relationship to become more personal and transforming. And as you get to know our Lord more intimately, know that it is also the Father in Heaven Whom you are getting to know.

My divine and personal Lord, it is the deepest desire of Your Sacred Heart to know me and to love me. Fill my heart with this same desire so that I will not only know You, dear Lord, but also the Father in Heaven. Heavenly Father, I thank You for Your perfect love and pray that I may open myself to that love more fully each and every day. Saints Philip and James, pray for me. Jesus, I trust in You.

Source of content: mycatholic.life